During April 2018 I will be blogging about my memories as MOM OF 6 from A to Z . These challenge posts will also be found at Creation and Compassion http://marcyhowes.blogspot.com/

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Christmas Lights and Decorations

I came home from my weekly visit with my Dear Father this evening to the sight of Christmas lights brightly shining from the eves of our home.   Thank you DD3 for once again taking care of the Christmas lights!   Her kind service to her mother is becoming quite the tradition, and it is greatly appreciated!  I do very much appreciate Christmas lights!   Just when the nights become the longest and the days the shortest of the entire year, the tradition is to deck the halls and the homes and the businesses with brightly colored lights to cheer us and to carry us through the darkest and longest nights of winter.  What a wonderful tradition!

On a somewhat sad note, DD3 regretfully informed me that of all of the wonderful strands of out door lights that were gifted to us over 20 years ago by my Dear Mother in Law, only two strands seem to work this year, and of those two strands, quite a few of the light sockets no longer work.   We have plenty of replacement bulbs, but it is the sockets themselves that are the problem.  It looks like we'll need to watch the sales this year and invest in some new lights for the future.

After our dinner, we pulled the old Christmas Tree out of the box in the garage, and the 3 dear daughters that are here for the weekend worked together to deck the tree out with lights and garlands and our truly unique collection of Christmas ornaments gathered from various locations over the years.   Again we found that the lights were lacking.   We have had many sets of chasing colored lights for the tree for the past two decades, but alas, only one strand still works properly.  So this year we will settle for the pre-strung white lights that came with the tree.   We are in the market for even more lights, and possibly for a new tree?   We shall see.  

But we are by no means perfectionists when it comes to our decorations around these parts, so for now, for this season, we are grateful for and we celebrate the lights of Christmas . . . and the wonderful service of loving daughters who help the tired Mom so she can enjoy the lights!

Friday, November 25, 2016

Parents Kind and Dear

I'm grateful for my wise, kind, loving and serving parents.  
Photos are of them at their wedding reception in 1949

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Nourishment for Body and Soul

I am grateful for nourishment for both body and soul.  I'm grateful that never once in my lifetime have I gone a day without the opportunity and means to nourish both my body and my soul.  I do not remember a single day where I have not nourished my body.  On days that I have not nourished my soul, it has been because of my own choice and neglect.

Angels speak by the power of the Holy Ghost; wherefore, they speak the words of Christ.  Wherefore, I said unto you, feast upon the words of Christ; for behold, the words of Christ will tell you all things what ye should do.

2 Nephi 32:3

Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men.  Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father:  Ye shall have eternal life.

2 Nephi31:20

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Zion and Being Kind

Zion:  The Pure in Heart.  The Lord's people or the Lord's church.   The place where the Lord's people and the pure in heart gather together.

People tend to congregate, associate, and want to be around others who share the same values, beliefs, and background as themselves.   I'm grateful to be surrounded by wonderful family, friends, neighbors and co-workers who desire to be good, and to do good to others.

When we find something good and lovely and true, we also naturally want to share the goodness with others . . . whether it's a great sale at the grocery store or the craft or fabric store, a beautiful and fun place to vacation, and possibly even a favorite fishing or hunting spot??  (I don't really know about that one for sure since my family isn't really into fishing or hunting, but I guess it could be true.)  The same is true when we find new faith or truth that we were not aware of before.   This is why we often want to share/convince those that we care about that our religious or political or other beliefs are true and good.  They make us happy, and we want the others that we care about to be happy too.

Wouldn't it be lovely if we could all share the same beliefs and values?  But if we can't, and it certainly seems that way these days, hopefully we can still love and respect and care for each other. Let's all do our part to build Zion.  And above all else.  Be Kind.

And verily I say unto you, I give unto you a sign, that ye may know the time when these things shall be about to take place--that I shall gather in, from their long dispersion, my people, O house of Israel, and shall establish again among them my Zion . . . And they shall go out from all nations; and they shall not go out in haste, nor go by flight, for I will go before them, saith the Father, and I will be their rearward.   -- 3 Nephi 21:1, 29

 . . . Enlarge the place of thy tent, and let them stretch forth the curtains of they habitations; spare not, lengthen thy cords and strengthen thy stakes; . . . And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord; and great shall be the peace of thy children.  --3 Nephi 22: 2, 13.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

I am Grateful for Jesus Christ

I won't preach a sermon, but I will emphatically state that I know Jesus Christ is the Savior of this world  He is the mediator between us and God, our Eternal Father.  He is my brother and yours, and he knows and loves each of us  intimately . . . all who now live, who have lived and those who will yet live  He has experienced and suffered every physical, mental, and emotional, pain and anguish, regret, and sorrow that each of us has ever experienced.  He loves me.  He loves you.  He loves us all.  He has paid the ultimate price so that we may live eternally with joy and happiness, as long as we will follow his path.

Behold, I am Jesus Christ, whom the prophets testified shall come into the world.  And behold, I am the light and the life of the world; and I have drunk out of the that bitter cup which the Father hath given me, and I have glorified the Father in taking upon me the sins of the world, in the which I have suffered the will of the Father in all things from the beginning.

3 Nephi 11:10, 11

Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heat; and ye shall find rest unto your souls.

Matthew 11:29

Learn of me, and listen to my words; walk in the meekness of my Spirit, and you shall have peace in me.

D&C 19:23

Therefore ye must always pray unto the Father in my name; And whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, which is right, believeing that ye shall receive, behold it shall be given unto you.   Pray in your families unto the Father, always in my name, that your wives and your children may be blessed.

3 Nephi 18:19-21

There are so many places to find others who testify of Christ.  Here are a few links to a few of my recent favorites:

The Perfect Path to Happiness  by President Thomas S Monson

Oh How Great the Plan of Our God by President Dieter F Uchtdorf

Songwriter Michael McLean

Be Still, and Know that I am God, talk by Elder M Russell Ballard

Saturday, November 5, 2016

November Roses

I'm grateful for Roses in November!  It's not every year that we can still enjoy these beautiful flowers into November, but this year we have been blessed with fairly mild temperatures and an fair amount of rain.   I confess that the roses in my yard are not the most well tended, nor the most beautiful ones around, but they have brought me much joy this year.   Every weekend I have been able to go out and find enough roses to make a nice bouquet to share.  Every weekend for the past several months I think  "This will probably be the last of the roses for this year"  but then the next weekend I go out and find even more.

I've now put away the hoses for the season, and cleaned out most of the dead plants from the vegetable gardens, but the roses are still blooming!  I'm grateful for November Roses!

Friday, November 4, 2016


I'm grateful for music.

I've spent quite a lot of time lately listening to music, and thinking about how much music has been a part of my life.  I like to listen to classical music in the car while I drive, and I tend to drive at least several hours each week these days to visit various family members.  We do have a very good local classical music station, and that is my preferred station most days.   I love classical music, especially strings and piano.  My dear Mother was a musician.  Of course I heard her practice and play on occasion, but most of my growing up years she was always quite busy tending us children and taking care of a busy farm household, but she listened to the radio, or her record collection, or her children practicing their own instruments while she worked.

I did take piano lessons for most of my elementary and high school years, and played the flute in the Junior HS Band,  I enjoyed participating in a musical group, and love listening to my own children perform.  I did listen to the radio and bought a few record albums as a teenager, but I never was one to build a big collection of popular music.  I would rather spend my money on books.    While in college I learned to enjoy some good ole country music too, and I've always been pretty easy going about letting others choose the music we listen to when in group settings.  I also enjoy  and gain comfort strength from Hymns and other religious music.   But when I'm alone, and traveling, I find that I prefer the classical music.  It calms my soul.  It brings me peace,

I'm grateful for music.

Thursday, November 3, 2016


Hooray for Sunshine! I'm grateful for sunshine!  I'm grateful that I was able to sit and soak up the sun during my lunch break today.

 According to this recent research conducted by three professors at Brigham Young University, the amount of time between sunrise and sunset is the weather variable that matters most. It matters more than the weather, than pollution, or even the temperature. .I've always known this deep down inside!! Hooray for sunshine!! I'm grateful for sunshine!! Get out and soak up the rays!

 Sunshine matters a lot to mental health; temperature, pollution, rain not so much

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Halloween Candy

Today I'm grateful for leftover Halloween Candy.  I may not have been quite so grateful on Halloween night when I realized how very much I had over-bought, but tonight it is nice to have a variety of munchie treats to choose from.

 DH bought some to take to his work to dish up to the kids of co-workers, and then called me Halloween morning to warn me that he had also accidently grabbed several bags that I had left out on the dining room table.   Worried that I wouldn't have enough for both the trunk or treat activity at the church parking lot, I stopped off at the drug store on my way home from work and bought several more large bags.  Needless to say, we had plenty, enough, and even more.   Many of the neighborhood kids made the rounds of the parking lot several times, and I'm sure that one of my sweet young friends stopped by our trunk at least six or seven times.  (No names will be named, to protect the guilty.  I love that girl in spite of her sweet tooth.)

I have tucked some away for later, taken some to work to share, and we still have a nice sized container sitting out for us to munch on.

Now, if I can only exercise a bit of restraint!  I do love me some chocolate!

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Freedom and Peace

Granted, this year has seen plenty of craziness in our country, but I am very grateful to be living in this country where we do have freedoms and a level of peace and safety that is unheard of in so many other places and time periods.  

I am forever grateful for Freedom and Peace.